Posts from May 2009

May 09

Deep Thort

Blog 7 + FT3 comments • 424 views

This is a PDF of the cover story on this month’s Research magazine, written by me about the ten current hottest thinkers in consumer behaviour (i.e. those dudes most often mentioned at research conferences).

It has been tested on non-researchers, viz my wife and in-laws, all of whom kindly said it was interesting and even comprehensible.

MEN AT WORK – “Down Under”

FT + Popular148 comments • 9,488 views

#514, 29th January 1983

A curious feature of Britain’s number ones is how they mirror the history of global travel: “Summer Holiday” in the 50s, Demis Roussos in the 70s, and now Men At Work’s paean to the Australian diaspora, spreading back along the old hippie trail and into Europe. “Down Under” is a song for anyone who’s ever felt the happy shock of familiarity in a strange place.


the law of comments-thread toxicity (some developments)

FT + Proven By Science///3 comments • 533 views

knitleralex harrowell of the yorkshire ranter proposes godwin score as a measure of a thread’s usefulness

daniel davies of dsquared digest proposes a better buzzer-causer than h!tler-mention

(useful pointer: the thread that alex and dsquared are actually commenting in is not itself especially relevant to this issue…)

May 09

Freakytrigger and the Lollards Of Pop: Season 3 Episode 9

Lollards Podcast2 comments • 501 views

The second half of the Lollards season kicks off with an playful hour about toys. Well, at least the toys you can talk about on a Saturday afternoon. Pete Baran is joined by Anna S, Kat Stevens and Pippa Ashton to talk about Barbie mutilation, freaky Japanese collectors dolls and children torturing each other. You know for kicks.

Music comes from Daphne And Celeste, Fergie and Missy Elliott, in Resonance FM’s never ending quest to push back the boundaries of music radio.

Additional materials beyond the break:


The Trouble With Pop: Keri Hilson

FT3 comments • 834 views

Miss Keri bay-bee!Keri Hilson – In A Perfect World

It’s near impossible to hear or see Keri Hilson without Timbaland lurking somewhere on the sidelines. You almost want to distract him with a tin of biscuits or something to see what Keri would be like if left to her own devices. But does she have any devices?


May 09

The Man With No Name’s Name!

FT4 comments • 367 views

Thinking about the reasons for the utterly futile X-Men Origins: Wolverine, made me consider the above point. We don’t care what the Man With No Name’s actual name his. The lack of name is part of his character, the mystery is central to the character and destroys it when broken (he is a walking Schrödinger Cat Box). Wolverine in Marvel Comics for thirty years did not have a back story, he pops up with no memory after Weapon X treatment to give him adamantium claws, and there is a suggestion that his healing factor also masks his ageing, he could be hundreds of years old. In the first X-Men film this origin is pretty much repeated, his berserker rage, his haunted cynicism comes from this lack of memory.

About five years ago Marvel comics thought it was time to wring all the money they could out of one of their most popular characters, and publish Wolverine: Origin, much of which is nicked as a pre-credit sequence here*.


PHIL COLLINS – “You Can’t Hurry Love”

FT + Popular96 comments • 7,290 views

#513, 15th January 1983

The 80s, as a decade, split rather neatly. There’s the early eighties, when the arrival of video and the aftershock of punk and disco turn the charts into a colouring book. There’s the late eighties, when the combination of club music and cheap high street pop radicalises the landscape again. And in between there’s the mid eighties, when…. when….. when people like Phil Collins got very big indeed.


May 09

The Canterbury House Tales

Do You See + FTPost a comment • 576 views

The reviews I have seen elsewhere for Shifty have all been pretty good. Nevertheless all the reviews could not dodge the fact that this is a low budget small town drug drama. A friend of mine has the “Human Traffic” rule, basically that British drug dramas are by their very nature terrible. I am not so judgemental, but I only went to see Shifty because it had such good reviews and I wanted the rule to be broken. Which has left me with a problem.

Shifty is a good movie. It feels grounded, the character relationships work and the setting seems absolutely authentic for a film about small town suburban drug dealing. Because it is filmed in my home town, and my home town has exactly the problems displayed in the film. Does this make me too close?

Shifty is a smart kid, his school results are mentioned a few times, who has become a smalltown dealer.


May 09

Popular ’82

FT + Popular/122 comments • 7,342 views

Now we have the peachy new VOTING SYSTEM on every track you might think we don’t need these polls, but they’re a nice way of summing up each year as we end it, so they stay. Every track on Popular gets a mark out of 10 from me – here’s where you tick any you’d have given 6 or more to (choose as many as you like).

No 1 Hits Of 1982: Which Would You Have Given 6 Or More To?

View Results

Poll closes: No Expiry

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My top mark this year went to “Come On Eileen” (10), and “Ebony And Ivory” and “Save Your Love” both got 1. Use the comments box to reflect on the year as a whole, if you like, and see you next week for 1983.

May 09

RENEE AND RENATO – “Save Your Love”

FT + Popular67 comments • 7,568 views

#512, 18th December 1982

It goes almost without saying that this is outrageous bilge, with a stripe of cynicism as wide as Renato’s spangly lapels. Renato who, of course, was allowed to appear as himself in the video, where his Pooh-Bearish charms win the heart of a replacement Renee – a forerunner of the Beijing Olympics pretty-voice-meet-cute-girl move, though the Chinese government are mere amateurs next to the steel-hearted nabobs of British Light Entertainment.